Bad professor, I need some advice

  • Thread starter Jncik
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  • #1
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hello friends, this forum is really great

I have a really big problem this semester.. my goals as a student is to take great grades because I need them for further education later on, in my previous semester my grades were very good, but now in this semester there is a big problem.. im a computer science student and to tell you the truth I don't really "like" physics, it's a great subject, but it's too difficult for me to understand it..

now at the first year we had 2 physics, I managed to pass them with an A.. it was really harsh for me because I had to work many hours a day in order to get this grade..

now this year.. we have a course about signals, there are many problems which I will tell you

a. the teacher is really bad, he thinks that we are physicists and that we know everything, at first 3-4 weeks I went to his lectures and I just couldnt understand anything, and he doesn't seem to care if we understand the course or not
b. this course doesnt interest me at all, but I have to pass it, i can't just drop it and pick another one, i dont know how the system in other countries is but here we have to pass it no matter what
c. I find really difficult to understand it because it reminds me of physics.. but this time it's worse, the book is really bad, the professor is really bad.. it takes me some days to understand basic principles

I tried to speak with the professor about my problems but judging from his replies he still thinks that his course is easy and we shouldnt have problems with it

now the big problem is here.. I have 7 courses, im doing well on the others, its just this.. and im wondering should I just stop studying it and focus on the others to get good grades? i spend so much time on this course and i eventually dont learn anything..

i can go to the finals again in september, i will have to study alone at summer(well im studying alone right now too since the professor is of no use) but i will probably search for a tutor or something because it will be really difficult

but i feel bad because this is the first time that i have to drop a course, but there is no other choice.. i dont know..

what would you do if you were me?

thanks in advance

ps: sorry for my english
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
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You are giving us ambiguous signals - first you say you have to pass it, then you ask if you should drop it. If you can drop it, drop it. If you have to pass it, pass it!
 
  • #3
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You are giving us ambiguous signals - first you say you have to pass it, then you ask if you should drop it. If you can drop it, drop it. If you have to pass it, pass it!
hi mal4mac, yes I didn't clear this out.. I have to pass it, when I say drop it I mean to take the final exam in autumn and not in june which is the official date, but I will have to study during the summer

i have actually decided to stop studying it, i just go to the lectures and keep notes, i will take the tests and if I fail, well let it be, I will just tell my professor to let me retake it in Autumn again if its possible

i just wasnt sure what to do, because of course who wants to study in the summer? but if i pass it now, i will take a bad grade, maybe C, and I dont really want this grade, but in order to take better grades i will have to study the whole course alone

i wanted to hear your opinions, what would you do if you had a similar situation like this?
 
  • #4
epenguin
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Are you completely isolated? What about the other students on your course? Do they have the same problem, and if not why not? Usually students on a course hang out a bit together, breaks or lunch in the refectory at least, laugh and complain together and there is usually one who looks to be understanding something - ask him something, best a definite thing like the first thing you didn't get. (Explaining is usually good for him too, if lucky he might realise or unconsciously get the feeling.) There may be just some key things that if you got them would unblock you.

Then you could ask around, e.g. the senior and postgrad students and junior staff in the department. They may confirm your evaluations, and usually there are more suitable books than the one you are working from the Prof. is using, it will be better to understand all of a more lowly book than nothing of the comprehensive and up to date one.
 
Last edited:
  • #5
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Good advice from epenguin!

Also - don't worry too much about not understanding the lectures or the set textbook. Park yourself next to the 'signals' section of the library. Using your lecture notes as a 'rough signpost' of what you need to know, create a set of notes you can understand from the library books that make sense to you (starting with the easiest!)

Also you must get problem sets, surely? If you can do those, then you should pass the exam (surely! Unless the prof. is *really* bad...) So talk to anyone you can, from fellow students to prof, until you've solved all the problems in the problems sets, and can do them at the drop of a hat (i.e. in an exam situation!)
 
  • #6
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thanks thats very good advice from both of you

i do communicate with others and it seems that there are many other people and friends of mine who are in the same situation

its really sad that there are 6 courses which are really great and easy to understand except for one

I will probably search for some other book and try to keep the best notes that I can and if Im not happy with the final result then I will decide whether I should retake the course or not...

i really have this feeling that there is something wrong with my math, I mean we have some other calculus courses where Im doing quite well, but I feel like I need to revise a little bit to remember some key points about differentiation and integration

in this course there are many integrations etc and the problem is that I need to understand every single number, what it means and why it is there, and sometimes i find myself in a situation where i see a number but i dont know what it is, thus can't continue reading the next parts
 

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